Results tagged Charles de Gaulle airport from David Lebovitz

Paris Taxi News and Tips

Taxi in Paris

Like many cities, taxis play a major role in getting people around Paris. However getting a taxi in Paris can be quite a challenge. And with only 4000 cabs added since 1937, from 14k to 18K, if you’ve ever been standing on a deserted street at 2am, then you don’t need me to tell you what a relief it is to find a taxi when you need it.

Also, as far as I know, Paris is one of the only European cities where the meters start when you call the cab. So be aware that if calling in advance, there will already be a higher fare on the meter than what is normally there if you just hail one yourself. (The Lyria train has a service where they will have a cab waiting for you at the Gare de Lyon, which I once used and when I got in, I saw the meter already had €17 on it. The total fare was €24 so most of it was “waiting time. I do recommend using a driver or making arrangements to be picked up by a service or taxi if arriving at the Gare du Nord via the Eurostar as there can be huge lines for taxis there. But at the other stations, it’s usually not a problem.)

A couple of new services have started in Paris. One are shared cabs, where you split the fare with someone. I’m not sure if you’ll save all that much on a trip within the city, but going to the airport can cut the far almost by half. Another development are véhicules de tourisme avec chauffeur (VTC), or taxi-like vehicles with private drivers. The government is trying to impose a rule that if you use a non taxi chauffeur, they have to wait 15 minutes before picking you up. Here are a few other caveats to know about taking a taxi in Paris:

Continue Reading Paris Taxi News and Tips…

Savora

sandwich

For a current trip I’m taking, to avoid airport food, I made a sandwich. Since I was en-route to Israel, I though it best to avoid my usual jambon fromage and make a turkey sandwich with cornichons, cheese, egg, and mustard.

I’m not a condiment guy; I much prefer regular mustard than something jazzed up with a lot of flavorings. And I’m not big on mayonnaise either. Sure, it’s a great moistener. But is it really better than an immodest swipe of butter? (Or some mashed up fresh goat cheese?) I always hear about all these new sandwich spreads and so forth, and I guess I’m kind of boring because none of those things with honey or sun-dried tomatoes or anything “Ranch”-style sound all that interesting to me.

I’ll stick with keeping my sweets for dessert, thanks. Sun-dried tomatoes should probably stay back in 1986, and although I haven’t lived in a ranch, if I ever did, because of all the exercise I was getting working the fields and herding cattle, I would not be eating sandwiches or salads with bottled dressing. I’d be chowing down on bbq ribs and fried chicken, for sure.

Continue Reading Savora…

Crazy Americans

airport line

When you fly in to Charles de Gaulle airport, there’s a mad rush to get off the plane. Then you’re herded to a holding pen-like area, where you wait to go through passport control. It’s complete chaos: everyone surging forward, en masse, trying to get around everyone else, regardless of who got there first. That is, except for the Americans, who wait patiently for their turn, but quickly learn that if they don’t assert themselves, they’re going to spend their entire vacation in that stifling, airless space.

If you leave 4.5-inches of space in front or behind you in France, you may as well not even be there as people take that to mean you’re not waiting. I know that because they act very surprised when I tap them on the shoulder and point out that yes, I are indeed standing in that line with my luggage, just like they are, to check in to my flight. I’m not just hanging out at the airport with a suitcase because I had nothing better to do.

So you have to constantly be on your toes and you can’t let your guard down for a second. If you do, you’ll never get anywhere. It’s pretty exhausting.

Continue Reading Crazy Americans…